The world’s most famous and mysterious street artist, Banksy, recently made headlines in the grandest terms possible by extending his performance theatre into the sale room at Sotheby’s in London – the veritable heart of the capitalist beast much of his work criticizes.
I figure most of you reading this are already familiar with the event in which his work, ‘Girl with Balloon,’ sold for $1.4 million and moments later self-destructed to the sound of loud beeps as it hung on the wall beside the sale room’s phone bank.
Or at least attempted to self-destruct.
Silly conspiracy theories swirled about collusion with the auction house, and mind-numbing debates over whether the work was rendered worthless or had doubled in value.
I immediately figured the shredding mechanism had jammed since only half of the work hung in tatters and, as I’ve said elsewhere, the value has undoubtedly risen and the high bidder would indeed wish to complete the transaction. It has and she has.
I’ve also reckoned Banksy, who has since rechristened the work ‘Love is in the Bin,’ must be irritated he was denied the pleasure of seeing the shredded strips cascade to the floor like a miniature ticker tape parade. In truth, I was disappointed as well.
But all is not lost. Banksy has released a ‘director’s cut’ video of the preparation, which includes footage of a rehearsal in which a duplicate print is indeed fully shredded and falls from the bottom of the frame in little strips.
And it’s wonderful: